Since I discovered Naija Nomads post about destinations I can visit with my B1/B2 Us visa, I’ve been itching to take advantage of this rare opportunity that would normally be accompanied by grueling visa applications. I need not emphasize how the Nigerian passport isn’t best to travel on since we require visas to most countries around the world. Therefore, when you get the chance to maximize the use of a visa asides from its original intended purpose, TAKE IT!!!
That was the case for me when my husband and I visited Mexico in January. Though I had used my B1/B2 visa to visit Turkey a few years back, I still had my doubts even after I confirmed that I could use the visa to visit Mexico. Unlike Turkey where the visa was required for you to be eligible to get an e-visa, Mexico was different. Just present your visa at immigration and voila! You’re in! Just like that! It sounded surreal but fortunately for us, that was all it took.
An hour and fifteen minutes flight from Fort Lauderdale, Florida to Cancun, Mexico and we were standing in line for immigration. We arrived on a Friday afternoon and boy oh boy was the airport packed! There were hundreds of people waiting to be checked by immigration a testament to the number of visitors trooping into Cancun for the weekend. About thirty minutes after we arrived, we finally got close to be stamped in by immigration and were assigned different officers. Mine was a woman with deep red-brown curly hair and a wide and well rounded face. Her make up was almost perfect; a well powdered face and popping red lipstick except for the very thin eyebrow she obviously re-drew because the regular one had been shaved off. I greeted her with a smile and slipped my passport to her.
“Where are you from?” She asked as she flipped through my passport.
Huh?! I actually wasn’t aware until that point that “G” in Spanish was silent so I was a bit confused when she said that.
“Nigeria.” I emphasized.
She didn’t seem to be bothered with my emphasis. She continued flipping through the passport like she was hoping to find something illegal.
“Is this your first time in Mexico”
“You live in Niheria?”
At this point, she was studying my US visa like her life depended on it. She touched it several times to feel its authenticity (if that was possible) then inspected it under a special light. Once she was convinced that the visa was real deal, she scanned it and did the necessary paperwork, stamped my passport and I was free to go.
After this successful trip, my mission on maximizing my US visa has quadrupled. Destinations on the list that I would love to visit next are Montenegro and South Korea if time, chance and pocket permits. And for every time I visit the US, I’ll sure be taking advantage to visit as many countries in the Americas on this list as I can. Fingers crossed…
Ensure to keep the detached slip from your immigration form. You’ll be required to present it at the airport when departing the country.
Have you ever visited another country on your US visa? Please share your experience in the comments section.